ZestMoney bets big on India’s ‘Buy Now Pay Later’ market post $50M fund infusion

Lizzie Chapman, CEO and Co-founder, ZestMoney, gets in conversation with YourStory’s Daily Dispatch on its recent fundraising and the future of the ‘Buy Now Pay Later’ credit instrument in India.
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Buy Now Pay Later (BNPL) platform ZestMoney is projecting huge revenue and category growth in the Indian BNPL market. The Bengaluru-based startup raised $50 million in its Series C round led by Australian fintech firm Zip Co. 

Existing investors, including Goldman Sachs, Quona Capital, Xiaomi, and Alteria Capital, among others, also participated in the round. 

According to Lizzie Chapman, CEO and Co-founder, ZestMoney, this is the largest funding round into a dedicated Buy Now Pay Later company. 

“We expect to see revenue growth of about 3-4X in the next 12 months. So, not just from the organic volume growth, but we are also seeing increasing take rates from merchant partners as they use BNPL more aggressively, not just as a payment solution, but a critical piece of their marketing toolkit,” said Lizzie on the company’s potential revenue generation. 

Indian consumers are increasingly moving to alternate credit instruments as many don’t own credit cards. The country is claimed to have over 200-400 million daily internet shoppers, of which less than 30 million are credit holders, and BNPL enters the market to fill this gap, explained Lizzie. 

Ecommerce platforms like Flipkart and Amazon, and other digital retailers provide these BNPL schemers to attract more customers. With the festive season approaching, there will be an increased opportunity for such platforms and their customers to use this payment mode. 

According to Goldman Sachs, India’s ecommerce space is poised to reach a $99 billion market by 2024, owing to heightened demand. In fact, industry experts are mulling on the BNPL segment owning a 9 percent share in the online payment methods market by 2024. 

In an exclusive interview with YourStory’s Daily Dispatch, Lizzie shared, ZestMoney has seen about a 5X increase in its demand over the last 18 months. 

“We think India is going to be one of the largest BNPL markets globally, and we think that the last 18 months have just accelerated demand for what we do. Having Zip coming in as an investor is really putting India and Indian BNPL on the roadmap,” she added. 

The growth in the digital infrastructure of India with UPI payments and digital KYC has become an advantage for online credit payments services as customers are turning digital-friendly. 

 

In the context of the Indian market, categories like electronics, edtech, fashion, and lifestyle are emerging trends. Moreover, electric bikes, solar panels, groceries, and food delivery categories also saw growing popularity for BNPL payments. 

“Anything slightly expensive, something that causes you a little bit of pause when you look at the ticket price, is a perfect category for Buy Now Pay Later products,” explained Lizzie. 

Founded in 2015 by Priya Sharma, Ashish Anantharaman, and Lizzie Chapman, ZestMoney offers BNPL plans that have ticket sizes of Rs 50 to Rs 5 lakh and can be paid over 30 days to 24 months. 

The startup has partnered with about 25 banks that help with financial counselling and provide options to help users build their credit history. In August, the fintech startup obtained a corporate agent insurance license from the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI). 

Edited by Suman Singh